Lone Star Literary Life (December 4, 2016)
“Dobie Paisano fellow and San Antonio author Nan Cuba on bringing out the best in herself — and other writers”
Houston Chronicle (May 27, 2016)
Creativity flows in a writer’s getaway with fluid future
“This just in: San Antonio novelist and Our Lady of the Lake literature professor Nan Cuba has left her husband Don for the ghost of Texas’ most notorious serial killer. Not only is she spending time with “one-eyed drifter” Henry Lee Lucas, but her months long fling with a most unpleasant man is taking place in one of the most idyllic Texas places I know: J. Frank Dobie’s Paisano Ranch, 14 miles southwest of town. Tucked away in a canyon guarded by limestone bluffs that channel a twisting, curling Barton Creek, the ranch is named for the swift, intelligent bird we also call the roadrunner.”
Texas Monthly (October 2015)
10 Writers to Watch (and Read)
ON WRITING, TEACHING, AND THE LEGACY OF TEXAS LITERATURE
Interview by Jeff Salamon
“When you look at landscape, we still do have long stretches of open land, and I guess the label for it is hardscrabble. A friend from, say, Vermont would look at it and tell me it was ugly. But to me it’s not ugly at all, it has an astounding beauty to me, I really notice it. And when I’m asked to talk about why I think it’s beautiful, there’s something interesting about being raised in this landscape that sends you messages about being thorny and tough, and at the same time there’s this open sky and optimism and hope. It’s kind of a schmaltzy toughness, you know, it’s the two opposites that are brought together that somehow create the way I at least think about myself and my family and this world and this state.”
SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS (MARCH 2016)
“Dobie fellowship fosters Texas writers” by Steve Bennett
“It is truly extraordinary what it offers Texas writers,” Cuba said during a recent hike around the ranch on a crisp day with a gas-flame blue sky. “The stipend is great, of course, but it’s the six months here — six months! — that you get to work on your own work. We want to produce great writing in Texas, and the Dobie helps us do that. I feel a real responsibility here, a commitment, to get to work.
“Look, I’m a first-time author, and I’m 68,” added Cuba, who is spending her ranch-time on a “tragicomic novel in the vein of a Coen brothers movie” about a serial killer, based on interviews she did in the ’80s with “one-eyed drifter” Henry Lee Lucas. “And still, the judges said let’s give her a shot. It feels like I won the Texas Pulitzer, it really does.”
Dobie fellows — nearly 100 of them in an elite club…
Conversation: Nan Cuba and Inkstravaganza (Oct. 4, 2014)
By Thomas Payton
“When I first moved to San Antonio in 2010, Nan Cuba was one of the first people I met. After that night, I knew I’d love this city.
I’d seen Nan’s name over the years in various literary publications and settings. I was happy to finally meet her. What I did not take for certain was that I’d be welcomed with such warmth and hospitality, combined with a quick engagement with and openness to new ideas. That is who Nan is, short and sweet.
Of course, Nan is known to most for having founded the nationally acclaimed literary arts center, Gemini Ink. Many in San Antonio, outside of the world of books and writing, don’t know how grandly Gemini Ink’s reputation stands. Indeed, talented staff, committed funders, passionate board members, and loyal students go a long way to make that happen. But at its foundation, the vision and keen execution in those early years seems all-Nan, and it became the infrastructure for what Gemini Ink is today. …
Read the full interview here.
Video: Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series (July 15, 2013)
Video of Nan’s reading at Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series, Sausalito, California on July 15.
Watch on Vimeo here.
San Antonio Woman (September/October 2013)
Nan Cuba: Novel Examines Damage Caused By Suicide
by Jasmina Wellinghoff
“Since the release of her book a few months ago, Cuba has been crisscrossing Texas and traveling farther afield to meet with lovers of fine literature at bookstores, conferences, libraries and other venues. After some 20 years of on-and-off solitary work on the ideas that eventually became Body and Bread, she is delighted to share her experience and insights with readers.” Read the full interview here.
On the Town (September/October 2013)
Book Talk: Nan Cuba, novelist and professor
~ Interview with Jasmina Wellinghoff
“I remember writing that first line of the first chapter, “Please help me say the unsayable: My first life ended when my brother Sam committed suicide.” I wrote that about half-way through the process. What I said to myself was, this book is going to be a eulogy. And while I was writing it, I was thinking that if I were able to wrestle with Sam and Sarah’s family and the motivations behind their behavior, it would in some way help me reconcile with the fact that my brother had made the same choice as Sam. Just like Sarah was trying to figure it out, I was trying to figure it out. But the odd thing is, now that I finished it, I no longer think that that’s what the book is about.”
The Quivering Pen (Sept. 4, 2013)
“I first met Nan Cuba in the late 1980s in sultry Swannanoa, N.C., where we both were trying to figure out how to write fiction in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Nan had a soft Texas drawl and a ready laugh. Our workshop colleagues would discover Nan was really made of rawhide and cussedness, when it came to her drive to see a novel through. … ”
Read this full and thoughtful interview here.
Making Oprah’s Top 10 (5/10/2013)
“It took Nan Cuba 24 years to complete her first novel. It took a blink for the book to become a pre-published sensation.
The May issue of “O, The Oprah Magazine” hit newsstands in late April with “Body and Bread” — Cuba’s debut work — listed under, “Ten Titles To Pick Up Now.” The rave from Oprah arrived weeks before the book’s scheduled release on May 14.
The plug from “O” reached Cuba through a friend. “I was in absolute shock,” she says. Cuba’s agent received the news with startling calm. “This is intriguing,” he told Cuba, an English professor at Our Lady of the Lake University. “Call me back when you know more details.”
Here’s one detail you can take to the bank: The “O” endorsed novel will sell more than a few copies.
—Ken Rodriguez, Light from the Lake, a blog about inspirational people at Our Lady of the Lake University, San Antonio, Texas
“The Source,” Texas Public Radio KSTX 89.1 FM (May 8, 2013)
The Rivard Report: Guest Post by Nan Cuba
Nan takes a turn on Gary Whitford’s regular column, Every Word Counts, to give her thoughts on an age-old question, “Can Creative Writing Be Taught?” The column is regular feature of the Rivard Report. In this post, Nan shares some lessons learned from her 25 years of teaching creative writing to all ages.
“The short answer is yes, creative writing can be taught, but like most claims, it’s more complicated than that. The truth lies somewhere between the proliferation of MFA programs and the fact that since everyone uses language, they think they can easily publish a book.”
San Antonio Current, 4/10/13
Arts writer Scott Andrews interviews Nan Cuba in the San Antonio Current about her upcoming appearance at the Texas Book Festival – San Antonio Edition. Nan and writer Andrew Porter will discuss fiction about family secrets on Saturday, April 13, at the festival.
Read the interview here.
The Next Big Thing: Myfanwy Collins interviews Nan Cuba
Author Myfanwy Collins (I Am Holding Your Hand, 2012) interviewed Nan for her blog, “The Next Big Thing.”
Video | Appearances